Direclty after the transformation of he Byzantine Empire into the Terran Empire in 1454, the Eastern Orthodox church was still an important part of the government, and Eastern Orthodoxy was practiced by virtually everyone, though more as a way of life as opposed to religious worship and practitioning.
Around 1480, the Eastern Orthodox church started to weaken, due to foreign influence and the start of the Terran Enlightment. People started practicing other religions, and the Church's governmental influence started to wane.
Around 1530 the dicision was made to change the state religion to Judaism, due to the many Hebrews and Ashkenazi who had become a majority in Terran society. However the posotion of the Church in the Imperial government was abolished, although it still played an important role in day to day life.
By 1560, the large amounts of Italian, Spanish and Portugese immigrants meant the State Church was split between Judaism and Roman Catholicism. Overcoming their differences, the Byzantine, Jewish and European groups statred to intermarry and coorporate. Religious freedom is established in 1568, leading to a huge wave of Protestant immigrants.
Around 1580, scientific disoveries, renewed fields of study and rational thinking led to the abolishing of the State Church, and many Terran citizens turned to agnostic thinking. Terran technology and personal freedoms soon surpass that of any other nation in the world.
By 1630 the Terran government officially declared itself to be secular, leading to an outrage in both the Christian and Muslim worlds. A low-level war fought both between foreign factions and domestic separatist factions that would last until 1681 cemented the Empire's position as a religious free zone.
In the year of 1670 the Terran Empire became Earth's first nation to abstain from churchgoing, with an evermore self-aware population and a givernment turned atheist; after a wave of Greek intellectuals moving to the Terran Empire after Greece found itself at war with the Iranian Empire.
By 1690, after several major religious wars, a majority of the Terran people fully abstained from religion, turning anti-theistic. A civil war between the anti-religious government and a fanatical religious groups broke out, with the less devoted believers and moderate atheists stuck in the middle. Sensing their chance for revenge, the Catholic states invaded the Empire once again.
By 1710 the government forces had repelled the invading Catholics, and defeated the religious splinter groups. Most of the less devout religious believers now turned anti-theist as well, seeing how religion had ravaged their land. But the schism between theists and non-theists became irreversible. A low-level insurrection was constant until 1723 when the last Reli strongholds in the Empire's northern areas were overrun by invading Arabic armies. Driving them out, retaliation soon followed, and by 1724 the Arabian Peninsula had become a burial ground. After this victory, the last few Terran believers abstained from their faith.
Religion has been outlawed and punishable by death since 1725, as religion supposedly posed a threat to Imperial rule. Even the most casual believer could be an influence on people's minds, perhaps making them question the government.
On a larger scale, religious communities and their leaders have always been influential, and therefore had a base of power, which was unaccepteable in the Emperor's eyes.
Originally the ban on religion wasn't out of the ruling class' fear, but was meant for the good of the people, as religion started wars and caused division and dissent among the people, as well as inhibiting science and technology. ANSOC and the Council agreed to the thesis that religion was the "opiate of the masses" and hindered free thought, which is somewhat of a double standard on the Terrans' side as free thought is good as forbidden.
The switch from snatch-and-kills, propaganda and educational programs to the violent persecution of religious believers started in the wake of World War II as a direct response to the Holocaust and the purgings in the Soviet Union.
Although some believers remained until halfway through the 22nd century, BPA agents were always watching for them, and had orders to shoot on sight.
There was little to no opposition about these executions, as the general population, after centuries of Party indoctrination, has come to accept ANSOC's views of religion as evil.
Because of all the brain control, religious thought and practice has become literally impossible; but there is a sort of state religion - whatever the Emperor believes. Which is also what I truly believe myself.
Terran state religion
- There is no God, no almighty entity, but there are higher natural powers that everyone is subject to.
- There is no such thing as the 'classic' Christian/Jewish/Muslim Heaven or Hell, but there is an afterlife. This afterlife is not 'just there', but is likely another dimension which exists on another universal plane, like an ethereal realm.
- Humanity is inherently superior to animals, including man-apes; since we evolved from them - and not the other way around. Since Humans were the only species to tame the Earth and claim it as their own, the Human race has proved itself worthy as masters of the world.
- Evolution is very real, and extinction is the way of the universe. The weak will perish and the strong and adept willflourish. If one dominant species exterminates another this isn't genocide, just the way nature had intended. If the weaker species became extinct it was never strong enough to exist in the first place.
- Ethics restrict science. Science leads to intelligence. Intelligence leads to technology. Technology leads to power. Power leads to might. Might leads to superiority. Therefore, ethics are a thing to be ignored.
- Slavery is natural and not a crime. The superior race should rule the lesser races, and lesser races who cannot protect themselves from being interred into slavery were never worthy of freedom.
- All humans are born equal, and it is not their heritage, land of origin, language, genes or skin color that determines his position in society; rather intelligence and personality should.
- When someone's body dies, the mind lives on. When the mind dies in the physical realm, it moves over to an ethereal plane, where the person can choose whether to cross over into the afterlife, or to be born again into a new body. Some reincarnated people retain their memories, some do not, and others gradually regain them. A human stays a human, a cat stays a cat. A man stays a man, a woman stays a woman. Animals, too, have souls, but it isn't wrong to eat meat since the animals killed for this will be reborn, or go to the afterlife.
- Ghosts like those from 'haunted house' stories are corrupted souls unable to leave the physical plane. This corruption can be caused by evil-doing or by great mental trauma in the ghost's past life. The former is stuck until the universe itself dies, the latter can cross over when it comes to terms with its problems.
Inquisitional Mandate (WIP)
The Government, Party and Emperor of the Terran Empire hereby declare that the Imperial Inquisitional Tribunal, made up of the following branches:
Ordo Proditorum (Traitors), Ordo Discrepantium (Dissenters), Ordo Religiosum (Religion), Ordo Hearesis (Heresy), Ordo Politicam (Politics), Ordo Militaribus (Military), Ordo Malleus (Tribunal Armed Forces)
That the Imperial Inquisitional Tribunal will serve as a semi-autonomous branch of the ANSOC Party and functions as a sub-branch of the Imperial Terran Government (Ministry of Justice).
The Imperial Inquisitional Tribunal is to carry out the following services in righteous duty to the Terran Empire and in service to the Teran Emperor; and have the following rights and freedoms to fulfill their tasks:
- To keep track of and observe the following: the mentally impaired, religious worshippers and practitioners, dissenters from the Terran Empire, those opposed to the Terran Imperial regime and those who would seek to alter or eliminate the inner workings of the Terran Empire and its manners of operation, any kind of traitor, disserters from the Imperial Military, any organization or individual who has outspoken or shown beliefs and/or mentalities opposed to Imperial law and government, persons or organizations passively or actively pursuing revolutionary ideals, unorthodox military, scientific, technological and political leaders who might become a threat to the integrity, safety and coherence of the Terran Empire.
- Placeholder (trial without jury)
- placeholder (membership classified but operates in the open)
- placeholder (works in concert with BPA)
- placeholder (relation to Emperor, Party and Government)
- placeholder (may take full control of local governments and military forces)
- placeholder (above the law)
- placeholder (right of possessing private military forces)
- To pursue these goals by any and all means necessary; including but not limited to: espionage, subterfuge, subversion, abduction, physical and mental torture, force of arms and summary execution.
Relationship between the Inquisition and the BPA
(BPA presence is classified, Inquisition presence is public)
(Both are essentially Secret Service organizations. BPA is the Passive kind, while the Inquisition is Active. They give each other tips and exchange intel.)
(They exchange targets; if one service can't bring them down the other most likely can)